Slow but sure, we are gathering entrants for this year's NaPoWriMo writing marathon. If you want to join the relentless horde, let me know at reenhead-at-gmail-dot-com, or in the comments box. In the meantime, my warm-up continues . . .
The great moth marks
Silence with neurotic
Wings, sixfold footsteps
Skittering over tin tiles,
Earth in spacious increments
Always cluttering about
Beneath the machine,
A body turning always
Over its own axle,
Noisy unto ingratitude.
Whatever clock marks
hours, whatever lost
Hands mark the life,
The moth swims space
Or else, a prodigal, turns
In dreams or hours,
In memory, unnatural
Air that lifts
The purposed weight,
Green wings baffling
A neuron that ages
But kites and kites the air.
I have a friend who studies poetry, and basically has devoted his life to this study. I was going to ask him why he doesn't write poetry, but then it occurred to me that this would be kind of like asking a doctor why he doesn't go get a disease.
More NaPoWriMo practice . . .
Nothing More Possible
That's some cute little youth by your side,
I say. I'm in the house of a guy going
On a voyage. He's got maps of sea lanes,
Pages and pages, spread out on his table.
He looks over and says, "Oh this?
Picked it up a month ago in Florida,
And she's just the best souvenir
I ever got in my life. You're not
Gonna see anyone else with another life
Just to have, like you have a million little things
And for what? Just to say that it's yours."
Huh, I say. You bet. Youth rolls its eyes,
Long hair curling round a soft, brown neck,
And what can you say to that?
Only that trips take you sometimes, and hey
Youth, just between itinerants,
There's nothing more possible than you,
Than you getting all that you want.
Bait and Switch
The wolves go up; the wolves go down.
They eat some kerchiefed villagers.
Next morning, they wake in human skin.
Ain't that a kick in the teeth?
Naked, the wolves get a regular rise
Out of their opposable thumbs,
Go around pinching things, and stubbing
Their toes on tree roots, but
None too swift. Soon a pack of wolves
comes by and eats them all up.
Next morning, they wake shaggy
As babushkas, twice as fat as before
And they howl and howl, Linochka,
Linochka . . . oh! such a funny way to sing.
The Palace of Fortune
I dream that a pumpkin gets up on its tendrils
And takes a walk, through a desert,
A savannah, a cool, dark night.
He is a knight-errant, seeking love,
enchanted palaces, the anodyne home of Fortune.
I'd hardly lain down, exhausted and shivering,
Ragged as the edge of a spade, a broken
Armament, when this enormous vision
Filled me with the pomp, the beauty
of the pumpkin, its delicate, aerial limbs.
As it walks, it sows its seeds behind it, each one
A little door, an entranceway of gold.
With great knocks it beats the doors down;
announces itself as the Vagabond of Desire.
Open up, little golden doors! Open up, great
Doors to the home of Fortune. The fragrant
Prince is hidden in your silent frames, laughing
With green tendrils, somnabulent with love.
As you can see from the post below, I'm practicing for NaPoWriMo. It's just that easy. Write some poems! Post 'em to your blog! We're not asking for masterpieces. Just a fun way to get your writing jumpstarted . . .
So. Your sister snoozes on the mountain,
Visits God and gains His confidence.
He's an ocean, a ship, she's a balancing act--
And they're waiting for better friends than
The ones you've got.
So. More than the yes-yeses of the little red frogs,
And longer than two sighs knit back to back,
Time moves onward. God crests a wave,
He hopes for less. Your sister draws night
like a weight to her chest.
So. God talks to your sister while she sleeps.
He pretends to be a hole, pretends to be a lake.
His body keeps shading into other things.
Night smooths your sister out, makes her
A road through a hard city.
And you? You cross the city's inert squares to gaze
Over the hollow tubes that thread the lake.
Time ticks and ticks. The city meets the water
and the mountain, turning blacker by the minute,
turns its back.
Boredom and the Lawyers
The bored lawyers are
of boredom. They
sense its egdges
(muggy smog), they
tease its thick
black tendons. When
the bored lawyers
sigh with boredom,
their boredom thrills
to know it, and when
their boredom subsides
to reveal numbered
and nuanced provisions,
the lawyers' eyes
turn silver, they become
lamplike seers, their
silken ties blown wild
by winds that touch
no others, that
no others have
the attention span
Oh, well. If you are one of the few persons to have yet received such a slightly less-than-perfect copy of the book, you can hope that it becomes worth a zillion dollars, like a misprinted postage stamp. You can also apply to me for explanations of any poems that are, sadly, less than readable.
Going forward, these boo-boos will be removed, allowing me to at least pretend to typographical perfection.
April fast approacheth, y'all, and that means it's time, once again, for NaPoWriMo, otherwise known as National Poetry Writing Month. I began oberving this sacred project four years ago, determining to write a poem every day for the entire month of April. That first year was one of random poems. The second year I wrote poems for my "Calamity" series. Last year, the third year, I wrote poems based on the titles of works found in that paragon of mediocre taste, "The Best Loved Poems of the American People." And this year?
This year, I'm going for broke. Two poems a day. Yowzers! One "Applies to Oranges" poem every day, and one poem for a project currently going by the title of "Wonder Clock."
And what's your place in all this? Well, you can join me. One poem a day, two a day, three a day if you've got the stomach. Test your poetic mettle against the horrible regularity of the turn of time. Let me know if you'll be participating, and your name will live in glory in the "NaPoWriMo" section of my sidebar.
And as a special incentive . . . Big Game will be publishing a tiny collection of NaPoWriMo poems, one for each day, suitable for framing (okay, not unless you don't want to be able to read the poems in the book). Join my monkey robot poem army, and you just might find yourself represented.
So don't delay. Get on the NaPoWriMo bandwagon and earn your versical stripes. Drop me a line at reenhead-at-gmail-dot-com to join the merry crew . . .